Mining for Heart: “The Heart of Humor” by Michael Sussman

If you saw last week’s Perfect Picture Book Friday post on DUCKWORTH THE DIFFICULT CHILD, you might be curious as to how Michael Sussman comes up with his ideas. Well….here he is to share his process of “mining” for the heart of humor. Thanks, Michael! The Heart of Humor Is anything more delightful than the … More Mining for Heart: “The Heart of Humor” by Michael Sussman

Mining for Heart: “Strong, Sure and Steady: The Beat of Ho’onani’s Heart” by Heather Gale + giveaway!

One of my long-time critique buddies is here with some thoughts on finding the heart in her debut picture book,  HO’ONANI: HULA WARRIOR. Illustrated by Mika Song, the book will release from Tundra Books on Oct. 1, 2019. It’s so exciting to see a manuscript you’ve watched grow and change into a story become a book! AND … More Mining for Heart: “Strong, Sure and Steady: The Beat of Ho’onani’s Heart” by Heather Gale + giveaway!

Mining for Heart: “Start with the Heart!” by Cathy Ballou Mealey

Thank you, Cathy Ballou Mealey, for sharing your process in writing WHEN A TREE GROWS. Besides the quest for heart, Cathy gives us a peek into how she worked out the unique structure for her concept.  As I began writing WHEN A TREE GROWS, I envisioned a series of calamitous, connected events that would be … More Mining for Heart: “Start with the Heart!” by Cathy Ballou Mealey

Mining for Heart: “Tips for Writing a Picture Book with a Mission” by Sarah Jane Abbott

A big THANK YOU to Sarah Jane Abbott, associate editor at Simon and Schuster, for sharing her thoughts today on Mining for Heart. I love opportunities to get a peek into the editorial process and learn how editors see and evaluate manuscripts.  Tips for Writing a Picture Book with a Mission I’m a firm believer … More Mining for Heart: “Tips for Writing a Picture Book with a Mission” by Sarah Jane Abbott

Mining for Heart: “The Battle Within” by Elizabeth Brown

Elizabeth Brown found the heart of her story by examining how her character overcame obstacles. What pulled her through? How did that perseverance manifest itself? Then, how could the author thread that through her story for children? Today we dig deep into DANCING THROUGH FIELDS OF COLOR: THE STORY OF HELEN FRANKENTHALER by Elizabeth Brown, illustrated … More Mining for Heart: “The Battle Within” by Elizabeth Brown

Mining for Heart: “Knowing When to Stop” by Mara Rockliff

I am such a fan of Mara Rockliff’s books: MESMERIZED, GINGERBREAD FOR LIBERTY, AROUND AMERICA TO WIN THE VOTE, and soooo many more! Plus a few brand new ones! Thank you, Mara for sharing your process of “mining for heart.” Where should a story end? If your story—like many of mine—is a biography, the answer might … More Mining for Heart: “Knowing When to Stop” by Mara Rockliff

Mining for Heart: “The Metaphor” by Jessie Oliveros

Having experienced loved ones struggling with memory loss in my own family, Jessie Oliveros’ debut picture book, THE REMEMBER BALLOONS, really touched my heart. It’s clear that this story came straight from her own experience, but how does a writer convey an abstract concept like memory loss and make it comprehensible to children?   Thank … More Mining for Heart: “The Metaphor” by Jessie Oliveros

Mining for Heart: “Plucking Heart Strings with Word Choice” by Vivian Kirkfield

Vivian Kirkfield has a really big year coming up in 2019! I had to nab her now to share her process of ‘Mining for Heart’ before she takes off on her trip hopping across the globe and gets too busy with multiple book launches! Thank you, Vivian, for your thoughts on heart as the emotional … More Mining for Heart: “Plucking Heart Strings with Word Choice” by Vivian Kirkfield

Mining for Heart: “Finding the Heart in Hardship” by Hannah Holt

Today I welcome author Hannah Holt who’s sharing her process of finding the heart of her debut picture book THE DIAMOND & THE BOY. What could be more appropriate for this series based on a “mining” metaphor than a story of diamonds! Thank you, Hannah! In one of my early drafts for The Diamond & … More Mining for Heart: “Finding the Heart in Hardship” by Hannah Holt